THE NFU is investigating the legal context of DEFRA‘s refusal to issue licences for the removal of badgers to help stop the spread of disease. 

“We are reviewing whether there is a case in legal terms for challenging the decision not to issue licences,” said Jan Rowe of the NFU‘s animal health and welfare committee.

“What legal right does DEFRA have to say it‘s not going to issue licences until there is proof available that the badger is responsible for spreading bovine TB?” he added.

Section 10(2)(a) of the Protection of Badgers Act 1992 says licences can be issued for “the purpose of preventing the spread of disease, to kill or take badgers, to interfere with a badger sett, within an area specified in the licence by any means so specified.”